Wednesday, June 24, 2015

My Growing Girl

 I mentioned that Abby learned how to swim over the weekend, and I was surprised by how much it affected me. It was like watching her take her first few steps as a chubby-legged baby. I was ridiculously proud, happy for her, and so in love with watching her figure it out on her own.

"Watch me, Mama!" she called, because she still calls me Mama. I watched, I ignored people talking to me, and tracked her little body as it moved from one end of the pool to the other before she grasped the side and looked to me. She saw my smile and I saw hers, beaming. My little girl, swimming. In the deep end.

She goes under water, she jumps in, she treads water. Just like that, she went from huddling on the stairs or clinging a noodle to being free in the water. The last one in the pool, always. My big girl has learned to swim, all on her own.

She also finishes two years of kindergarten this week, compounding my life with more emotional milestones surrounding my oldest girl. I have been so happy and so blessed with her teachers, and her school, whose priorities and goals line up so closely with my own. In addition to provincial curriculum, her teachers love getting the kids out exploring nature, letting them invent their own games, challenging them to ask questions and then spending all day exploring answers. They hug the kids when they need it, and in a world where physical contact between teachers and kids is often discouraged or banned, I love that they recognize when a kid just needs a cuddle. 

I will be sad to say goodbye to her teachers, but I am so excited for her to begin her formal education. That's later. First ... summertime calls. My girl will be home with us again. There will be no rushed mornings or strictly enforced bedtime. 

I might be belabouring the topic, but I must repeat it: I love this pool in our backyard. I was in it three times today! The girls are starting to invent funny pool games, Summer has learned how to jump in and swim to the ladder on her own (in a life jacket), and I have a place to float and read my book in the afternoons. Dreams do come true!

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